“A good moral character is the first essential in a man…It is therefore highly important that you should endeavor not only to be learned but virtuous.”
Everywhere you look within the walls of the White House are shrines to our democracy. On one end of the main floor, George Washington’s commanding portrait hangs in the East Room for all to see. First Lady Dolley Madison famously rescued this national treasure before the British set fire to the building during the War of 1812. On the other end, guests are greeted in the State Dining Room by Abraham Lincoln’s likeness hanging above the fireplace, one of the most valuable paintings of the sixteenth president. The stately rooms in between, famously restored and redesigned by Jacqueline Kennedy, are filled with priceless artwork, furniture, and symbols of our history.
Upstairs is the president’s private residence, where every commander in chief since John Adams has lived with his family. Notable guests stay in the Lincoln Bedroom, which the martyred president once used as a working office, or the Queen’s Bedroom, where Winston Churchill rested during wartime visits to Washington.